Responsible Use of Library E-Resources

Library-subscribed or library-purchased e-resources are for the academic use of the HSUHK authorised users. They are for teaching, learning and research purposes only. Commercial use is strictly forbidden. The use of these e-resources is governed by the terms and conditions set out in the license agreements with the service providers or publishers. The specific terms of use are various and can usually be found on the product websites. It is the responsibility of each user to comply with these terms and conditions. In general, authorised users may print or download a reasonable, insubstantial portion of the content of an e-resource for non-commercial educational use.


HSUHK Authorized Users
Authorised Users consist of academic staff, students, staff, or walk-in users who have access the resource on computers physically located in the Library.


Prohibited Activities
Including but not limited to the following:

  • Systematic or excessive downloading of content
  • Archiving of downloaded materials on local servers without permission
  • Disclosing personal account usernames and passwords to others
  • Redistributing, republishing of any journal text, book chapters, data downloaded from databases, output, search results, or other information in any form or medium
  • Alteration, abridgement, decompilation, adaptation or modification of the licensed materials
  • Use of licensed content for fee-for-service
  • Posting copyrighted content on the Internet or other electronic network including course web sites (providing links to licensed content is acceptable)


Examples of Systematic and Excessive Downloading

  • Continuously downloading one article after another
  • Continuously downloading tables of contents, search results, citations, or output
  • Downloading the entire issue or volume of an e-journal
  • Downloading the entire content of an e-book, except in a few cases where this is allowed by the providers
  • Downloading subscribed e-resources by using robots, spiders, or other automated programs (such as website crawlers or offline browser)


Commercial Use

  • Commercial use is strictly forbidden. It means the use of licensed materials for any other purpose than those contemplated by license agreements signed.
  • It includes but not limited to instances wherein authorized users are rewarded monetarily through the sale, resale, loan, transfer, hire or other form of exploitation of the licensed materials.


Consequences of Inappropriate Use
The above activities can be detected by providers quickly. It can result in a campus-wide access suspension by the provider and may even lead to legal actions. The entire HSUHK community will lose access to the e-resource because of such inconsiderate behavior. Users are fully responsible for all legal consequences arising from excessive downloading or infringement of prevailing copyright laws.


Last Update: 14 November 2018